A divisive disease: Clashing treatments for HIV/AIDS in Swahili literature
The aim of this paper is to illustrate the historical evolution of the “clashes between epistemes in relation to the treatment of illness”, which characterize Swahili literary genres on HIV/AIDS (Nicolini 2022) through an exploration of Swahili novels. Therefore, I will investigate the epistemologies of a pandemic both analytically, by investigating both the knowledge of HIV/AIDS and the plural ways of treatment involved, as well as aesthetically and linguistically, by examining the metaphorical doubles of HIV/AIDS. Moreover, I will compare the metaphorical doubles of HIV/AIDS in Swahili literature to the metaphors in Anglophone literature from East Africa. Finally, I will conclude the study with a glance at the recent Covid-19 pandemic. The clash, between modern medicine and non-scientific knowledge(-s) in relation to the treatment of illnesses, seems also to be a continuous feature in the contemporary discussions dealing with Covid-19 circulating in the social media.